New Hydrasynth Models

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Re: New Hydrasynth Models

Post by blinddrew »

Folderol wrote: Tue Sep 14, 2021 12:26 pm I rather suspect that if given a free choice at the same price the majority of people would chose kit with a built-in PSU - not that there's any way to prove it!

I suspect that those who thought about it would (I'm one of them too) but what percentage of potential buyers that would be is another question.
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Re: New Hydrasynth Models

Post by Eddy Deegan »

Zukan wrote: Tue Sep 14, 2021 2:23 pm
N i g e l wrote: Tue Sep 14, 2021 10:05 am If you ever get the FS1r urge again, be sure to checkout the MODX 1st [or MONTAGE for those on the synths for cakes scheme].

FS1r was FM & formant whereas MODX is FM & samples but it has formant filters, multiple parts & motion sequencing which might be an equivilent and faster to set up !

I think there are tools for transfering DX7 patches to the MODX [ alot of the FS1r presets were DX7 patches layered up with added Fx]

MODX factory presets dont do it justice.

I'll look into that. Thanks.

I bought my wife half a MODX recently (she bought the other half) and it's actually really good. Sounds great, small and light, 8-op FM synth as well as AWM2, 16 layers per performance and multiple arpeggiators that can run simultaneously and aren't 'stupid' in that they respond to what you're playing.

Phil "Bad Mister" Clendeninn at Yamaha did a bit of write-up on FM in the MODX here: https://yamahasynth.com/learn/modx/mast ... ion-part-i
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Re: New Hydrasynth Models

Post by Eddy Deegan »

blinddrew wrote: Tue Sep 14, 2021 12:02 pm
Eddy Deegan wrote: Tue Sep 14, 2021 2:57 am ...I don't care about the cost, I don't care about the technicalities. I'm a consumer for whom companies are building these instruments and devices...

Whilst I appreciate that you alone may be a significant part of their market share ;) I humbly suggest that you might not be a 'typical' customer... ;)

You're not wrong, but then again neither am I ;)
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Re: New Hydrasynth Models

Post by blinddrew »

Eddy Deegan wrote: Tue Sep 14, 2021 10:33 pm
blinddrew wrote: Tue Sep 14, 2021 12:02 pm
Eddy Deegan wrote: Tue Sep 14, 2021 2:57 am ...I don't care about the cost, I don't care about the technicalities. I'm a consumer for whom companies are building these instruments and devices...

Whilst I appreciate that you alone may be a significant part of their market share ;) I humbly suggest that you might not be a 'typical' customer... ;)

You're not wrong, but then again neither am I ;)

Win Win! :D
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Re: New Hydrasynth Models

Post by t-sun »

blinddrew wrote: Sat Sep 11, 2021 7:14 pm Dare I suggest that perhaps you, and indeed most of us on this forum, are not entirely representative of the entire target market for musical instruments; being as we are, ahem, slightly older and probably slight more well-heeled than the average aspiring musician? ;)

We are very good at extrapolating our own requirements out and spending other people's money here. :D

I would not qualify myself as particularly well-heeled, over the course of twenty or so years of music equipment trading I've spent over $1k USD on one bit of kit (an 808, which I subsequently sold for rent money soon after, sigh). So, I'm happy to make do and just find the wall wart thing to be a necessary evil for my cheap but effective gear. I'm extremely excited about the Explorer, and am definitely going to buy one, but for $600 it's perfectly understandable to make a few compromises and frankly the features blow me away entirely (built in OLED oscilloscope is just such a nice touch).

The biggest problem with the wall warts is that they take up so much space on a power strip or conditioner, which requires a short extension cord. If building in an IEC type power supply is unfeasible, the power adapter that came with the Microbrute is a much better solution, because it has a second (replaceable, standard) cable that goes from the adapter to the wall, similar to a laptop supply. Never understand why other makers don't use similar supplies, at least they avoid the problem of blocked sockets.
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Re: New Hydrasynth Models

Post by Hugh Robjohns »

I've been trying to get a handle on the actual extra costs and time involved in building an SMPS into a product instead of employing an already-approved external unit to supply low-voltage DC to the product.

I've talked with a few product designers and manufacturers in the UK and they are all saying very similar things.

Every new product has to be tested to comply with the EMC standards for the countries they wish to sell into, and those standards are extensive. Japan and South Korea have particularly stringent requirements, apparently. One manufacturer supplied this list of required standards to give an idea of the complexity:

•EN 55032:2015, Class B
•EN 55016-2-1:2009 A1 2011
•EN 55016-2-3:2010 A1 2010
•EN 55035:2017
•EN61000-4-2:2009
•EN 61000-4-3:2006 A1 2008 A2 2010
•EN 61000-4-4:2012
•EN 61000-4-5:2014 A1 2017
•EN 61000-4-6:2014
•EN 6100-4-11:2004 A1 2017
•EN 61000-3-2:2014
•EN 61000-3-2:2013
•FCC Part 15B Class B
•ANSI C63.4:2014
•ICES-003 Issue 6: Class B

...and this is just for using an external pre-certified SMPS 'line lump' supply.

Testing EMC compliance with an already-approved line-lump power unit typically costs around £10k, but if the EMC tests fail for any reason, the cause has to be identified, rectified, and the product retested... for the same cost again.

So if the manufacturer expects to sell 1000 items, say, (which is fairly typical for the low-volume products we're talking about) the EMC testing adds £10 to the cost of every product leaving the factory. That becomes around £50 added to price for each unit sold to a customer after distribution and retailer markups and sales taxes. In a highly competitive market place, that is a significant factor in a devices' financial viability.

If, instead, the product is fitted with a mains inlet, the testing regime becomes a whole lot more complex -- even when using an internal OEM SMPS power unit. Depending on how the company goes about the overall product design, an internal PSU can apparently add further testing and certification costs of over £12k, which are in addition to the standard EMC certification costs, and a hike to the retail price of around £75-100. It is also likely to involve more internal metal screening which obviously add to the mechanical design and construction costs, as well as increasing weight and this potentially adding to the shipping costs.

In addition to that, some of those I talked with discussed other significant practical benefits to using external SMPS line-lump power supplies. Many revolve around keeping the inherent fast switching transients and other electronic noise away from sensitive audio circuitry -- particularly relevant to things like mic preamps, of course. However, it also means the product can be made smaller and lighter as it needs less internal metal shielding, and these factors are often relevant concerns in keyboards.

So it really comes down to whether enough people would be prepared to pay, say £1600 or more for an instrument with an internal PSU instead of £1500 or less for one with an external PSU.

In such a fiercely competitive market place, the general feeling from those I've talked to is no -- they believe few of their customers would be prepared to pay an extra £100 or more just for the luxury of an internal mains PSU. It might be different with high-end 'professional products'... although the pro market is even smaller and increasingly using semi-pro products for price reasons!

I know these points have been discussed before, but I thought it helpful to have some real world numbers to mull over.
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Re: New Hydrasynth Models

Post by Folderol »

Interesting. Things (and especially costs) have changed a lot since I last had any involvement in this sort of thing. Changes the perspective somewhat :(
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Re: New Hydrasynth Models

Post by t-sun »

That's an extremely good breakdown, thank you. If the volume of expected sales really is as low as 1000 units then it certainly does make sense. I'm surprised that in this day, which seems like a renaissance of synth hardware interest, that the unit volume would be so low for a global product, but it is a crowded market.

On a different note, I hadn't seen this mentioned yet. Forgive me if it's come up:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1sPns38hevQ

https://audiocookbook.org/hydramorph/

The Hydrasynth has a built-in randomizer feature, of course, but given the menu system (which you can never judge until you lay hands on it, in my experience) having what's effectively a patch editor with some extra features available is great. Reminds me of the stuff that people used to put out for Atari ST way back when.
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Re: New Hydrasynth Models

Post by N i g e l »

t-sun wrote: Wed Sep 15, 2021 7:34 pm That's an extremely good breakdown, thank you. If the volume of expected sales really is as low as 1000 units then it certainly does make sense. I'm surprised that in this day, which seems like a renaissance of synth hardware interest, that the unit volume would be so low for a global product, but it is a crowded market.

some of the all time big sellers were -

M1: 250,000
DX7: 200,000 units in 1st 3 years
Microkorg: 100,000

numbers are from the WWW & may be approximate
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Re: New Hydrasynth Models

Post by Martin Walker »

John Stafford wrote: Tue Sep 14, 2021 10:22 am I don't mind external PSUs if they have a separate mains cable. I hate the ones that are just a fat plug.

I believe the distinction is that those with a separate mains cable generally get called 'line lumps', whereas the ones with the PSU built into the mains plug are termed 'wall warts'.

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Re: New Hydrasynth Models

Post by resistorman »

Martin Walker wrote: Wed Sep 15, 2021 11:26 pm
John Stafford wrote: Tue Sep 14, 2021 10:22 am I don't mind external PSUs if they have a separate mains cable. I hate the ones that are just a fat plug.

I believe the distinction is that those with a separate mains cable generally get called 'line lumps', whereas the ones with the PSU built into the mains plug are termed 'wall warts'.

Martin

A lot of gear runs on standard voltages with somewhat standard coaxial plugs, so it's easy to swap out the type of PSU.
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Re: New Hydrasynth Models

Post by Eddy Deegan »

Martin Walker wrote: Wed Sep 15, 2021 11:26 pm
John Stafford wrote: Tue Sep 14, 2021 10:22 am I don't mind external PSUs if they have a separate mains cable. I hate the ones that are just a fat plug.

I believe the distinction is that those with a separate mains cable generally get called 'line lumps', whereas the ones with the PSU built into the mains plug are termed 'wall warts'.

That's a good point Martin. Korg have done a few line lumps over the years (the Triton Rack and KingKorg spring to mind; I'm sure there are more) and I can sort of live with them. They are external of course but at least they are flexibly external. I have three eurorack power supplies of the same ilk.

So in light of your wise observation I will retrospectively clarify that my previous rant was pretty much exclusively aimed at wall warts!

This isn't to say I want a load of line lumps either though... at present they are fewer in number and as such less of a pain for me right now.
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Re: New Hydrasynth Models

Post by jjlonbass »

resistorman wrote: Thu Sep 16, 2021 12:04 am
Martin Walker wrote: Wed Sep 15, 2021 11:26 pm
John Stafford wrote: Tue Sep 14, 2021 10:22 am I don't mind external PSUs if they have a separate mains cable. I hate the ones that are just a fat plug.

I believe the distinction is that those with a separate mains cable generally get called 'line lumps', whereas the ones with the PSU built into the mains plug are termed 'wall warts'.

Martin

A lot of gear runs on standard voltages with somewhat standard coaxial plugs, so it's easy to swap out the type of PSU.

It would be nice if manufacturers of the sort of gear we use would standardise on a connector, voltage and polarity for low-voltage powered equipment. That would make it possible to use a "beefy" external DC PSU to power lots of gear.

John
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Re: New Hydrasynth Models

Post by BigRedX »

Regarding external PSUs, I play in a band with two guitarists who each use a single multi-effects foot pedal (one has a Line6 Pod and other a Boss unit of some description) which require external PSUs. In the 5 years I've been with them both have had to replace these PSUs several times due to gigging wear and tear on the cables (usually on the low voltage side). On the other hand with my Line6 Helix Floor I just plug in my standard mains cable. If there was a problem I have a spare in my cable case.

If it was me I would, by now, have considered mounting both the effects unit and its PSU on a pedal board to avoid having the continually plug and unplug the PSU, but it kind of defeats the object of having a convenient all-in-one (relatively) compact unit, if the first thing you have to do to make it reliable is the increase its on-stage footprint.

External PSUs may offer significant cost savings which can be passed on to the end user, but in the long term for those who gig these devices, the cost of reliable replacement PSUs can soon add up and may even work out more expensive is the device itself has a long useful life.
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Re: New Hydrasynth Models

Post by Chimera »

Good thread this, I do wish we had an uptick facility. So much I agree with on the wall warts. If manufacturers HAVE to have an external PSU then they could as a minimum provide a UK plug to lead to PSU then another decent quality lead with a locking screw as Moog did with the Matriarch. I can live with a wall wart for a guitar FX pedal for under £100 but a synth costing multiples of that figure. Nah! You’re havin a laugh!
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